The Catholic Church has taken the extraordinary step of banning the practice of Reiki from all of its hospitals, clinics and medical facilities.
Bishop McManus, a Catholic Guideline Committee member stated, “…there was a concern on some level that this type of new age philosophy of life, as a spirituality… is lacking,” and, that “there is not medical proof that Reiki promotes healing.”
He added that the Christian tradition holds “all healing comes from God who chooses intermediaries – doctors and nurses – to carry it out.”
What does this mean for Reiki Practitioners?
Reiki’s popularity is continuing to grow at an increasing rate (thus gaining the attention of the Catholic Church) and has found a dedicated and loyal group of adherents.
Although the Catholic Church is both a powerful RELIGIOUS and MEDICAL entity, their beliefs do not necessarily need to impinge upon the health considerations of other Christians and the general public.
If a practitioner wishes to continue to using Reiki, it should be totally their own perogative.
Undoubted the new ruling was based upon the Catholic Church’s deep caring and concern for their congregation. We respect and acknowledge their decision.
But the Catholic Church has had its own ups and downs, and as influential as they may be as a religious entity, each person should be able to have their own personal opinion on the matter of alternative health matters and follow their own beliefs, consulting with their own personal physician.
Does this hurt the practice of Reiki?
As long as it remains an effective source of “alternative” healing and relief, Reiki should remain a viable adjunct to traditional healing. Is it for everyone? That is only for each individual to choose for themselves.
Many healing modalities have appeared and disappeared, many religious groups have either supported or condemned a number of health treatments.
Opinions have changed, rulings have come and gone. Perhaps the Catholic Church will change its belief structure, perhaps not.
In the end, the longevity and acceptance of any treatment will ultimately lie within its own merits.
Sprituality is intensely personal. Perhaps the best action for the practitioner is to simply accept and respect the rights of others to choose their own path, and then, to go and follow their own.
“According to a 2007 report from the National Institutes of Health, 1.2 million Americans have had Reiki treatments. That’s a 12% increase from 2002… should Reiki decrease stress pathways or reduce physiological responses to stressful situations, it could be a useful adjunct to traditional medicine and have significant and economic benefits.”
The debate over reiki’s benefits spills over at Roman Catholic hospitals
(The Boston Globe)
Catholic Church Bans Japanese Healing Technique – Reiki